Florida Tomato Leader: We’re Just Trying to Hang on Here

Jim Rogers Exports/Imports, Florida, Tomatoes

By Clint Thompson On the surface, an oversupply of Florida tomatoes helped lead to suppressed prices for the industry. However, one industry leader stresses that supply still pales in comparison to previous seasons. “Look at what’s happened to our industry over the last one to two decades. An industry gets beaten down over a couple of decades and you have …

fresh ripe read and orange tomatoes with green twig on yellow background

Improved Prices for Florida Tomatoes

Jim Rogers Agri-business, Florida, Tomatoes

By Clint Thompson The prolonged period of decreased prices for Florida tomatoes may be nearing an end. Growers should be encouraged by an uptick in prices in recent weeks. Michael Schadler, manager of the Florida Tomato Committee and executive vice president of the Florida Tomato Exchange, describes the change in momentum that has shifted in producers’ favor. “A month ago, …

Bacterial Spot: Active but Declining in South Florida

Jim Rogers Disease, Peppers, Tomatoes

Bacterial spot disease continues to be active on tomato and susceptible pepper varieties across Southwest Florida, according to the South Florida Pest and Disease Hotline. However, overall disease pressure has declined with the recent dry weather in the southern part of the state. The disease continues to be widespread in fields in Homestead, Florida and is starting to become prevalent …

red tomatoes

N.C. Tomato Growers Association Offering Scholarship

Jim Rogers North Carolina, Tomatoes

The North Carolina (N.C.) Tomato Growers Association is offering a $1,000 merit/need-based scholarship for the 2022-2023 academic year. Any North Carolina resident who pursues a horticulture or agribusiness undergraduate or graduate degree at a four-year North Carolina college or university is eligible to apply. The deadline for submitting an application is May 31. The award will be based on a …

Whitefly Pressure Varies Across Florida

Jim Rogers Florida, Pests, Tomatoes

Whiteflies are increasing to high levels in Southwest Florida, which is normal this time of year. It is especially true for older tomato plants and melon crops, according to the South Florida Pest and Disease Hotline. However, population levels are much lower in other areas, including in tomato and squash plants in central Florida. Whiteflies have only been observed occasionally …

Decision Protects Florida Tomato Growers

Jim Rogers Florida, Tomatoes, Trade

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) released a statement after the U.S Department of Commerce rejected a request to exempt certain greenhouse-grown specialty tomatoes in Mexico from the 2019 U.S.-Mexico Tomato Suspension Agreement. This agreement was put in place to provide relief to domestic tomato growers against unfair trade practices. Exempting specialty tomatoes grown in Mexico from the Tomato Suspension Agreement …

Imports Not the Issue for Tomato Producers This Year

Jim Rogers Florida, Tomatoes

By Clint Thompson Normally, tomato producers can point the blame for suppressed market prices to rising imports, especially those arriving from Mexico. That is not the case this year, however. Florida farmers can only blame themselves for an oversupply of produce that has led to low prices, according to Bob Spencer, president of West Coast Tomato in Palmetto, Florida. “This …

tomato lot

Oversupply Hurting Florida’s Tomato Industry

Jim Rogers Florida, Tomatoes

By Clint Thompson An oversupply of tomatoes this season has led to decreased market prices for Florida producers. Bob Spencer, president of West Coast Tomato in Palmetto, Florida, said prices for tomatoes are an estimated $5 to $7 FOB (freight on board) compared to desired prices of $9 to $11. It stems from increased acreage. “The problem we’re experiencing right …